For CFO, Dell Taps GE Veteran Gladden

Dell director Donald Carty, who has served as CFO for nearly two years, will remain on the board.
Stephen TaubMay 19, 2008

Dell Inc. named General Electric Co. veteran Brian Gladden as Dell senior vice president and CFO effective June 13, replacing Donald Carty, who resigned.

Carty, a 16-year Dell director, will remain on the board. He is probably best known for his five-year stint as chairman and CEO of American Airlines parent AMR Corp., where he also had been CFO.

Gladden, who will report to CEO and Chairman Michael Dell, will be responsible for all aspects of Dell’s finance function, including accounting, financial planning and analysis, tax, treasury, audit, and investor relations.

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Prior to joining Dell, Gladden was president and CEO of SABIC Innovative Plastics Holding BV, formerly GE Plastics, and among the world’s largest producers of high-performance polymers used by electronics, office equipment, computer, and automotive manufacturers.

Carty was praised for stabilizing and restoring credibility to the struggling computer maker. He was appointed vice chairman and CFO in late 2006 amid reports that the company’s accounting for warranty accruals was being probed by the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company also had recently delayed the filing of its quarterly results “due to questions raised” in connection with ongoing investigations by the SEC, the company’s audit committee, and the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York.

“Don has played a key role in reestablishing transparency and integrity in our financial practices,” said Dell.

Carty had had mixed reviews at AMR, where he was CEO from 1998 to 2003. When American Airlines plunged toward bankruptcy after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, he convinced employees to agree to major concessions. However, at the same time it was revealed that he had secretly approved bonuses and pension perks for himself and other senior executives, the Associated Press noted. Carty wound up resigning amid the furor.

In a press release, Dell described Gladden as an operationally focused CFO whose skills in running multibillion-dollar enterprises and substantial experience with an industry leader “make him an ideal fit for the global economies in which we operate.”

Gladden’s previous experience includes nearly 20 years with GE in financial and management leadership roles that include being vice president and general manager of its GE Plastics resin business; CFO of GE Plastics; and vice president and CFO of GE Medical Systems Healthcare IT business. He was named a GE corporate officer in 2002 while CFO of GE Plastics. He formerly served on GE’s corporate audit staff for five years.